How to Make Money on Survey Sites

Updated on March 9, 2017

Before You Jump In

If you are considering using survey sites to supplement your income, there are a few things you should ask yourself. These sites can in fact provide you with anywhere between $50 and $200 per month, but whether it's worth doing or not depends on a few things:

  1. Are you willing to give out personal information? Many of these surveys will ask you your postal/zip code, your age, gender, annual income, etc.
  2. How much time are you willing to spend on these sites? Most surveys take under fifteen minutes, but in order to make a decent amount per month, you're going to want to do at least two per day.
  3. Are you okay with having to wait to get your money? Most survey sites have a payment threshold, and pay via PayPal, so you can expect to wait a few weeks before getting your first payment.

How it Works

Perhaps the best thing about supplementing your income with paid surveys is how little effort it requires. Login, click on a survey, give your opinion on a product or service, and you're done. Before you get to that point, however, you have to choose a few sites to join, and understand how their payout system works. There are two common ways these sites operate:

  1. Point system: Sites such as Swagbucks, MySurvey, and Opinion Outpost award points for each survey completed. Once you hit a certain number of points, you can cash them in for money or a gift card. On these sites, 1000 points usually equals $10.
  2. Cash system: Sites like Legerweb, iPoll, and Vindale award cash for each completed survey, and once you reach your payout threshold, you can have the money deposited into your PayPal account. These thresholds range from $20-$50.

What is Required of You

So, you've chosen a few sites, you understand how their payout system works, and you're ready to get started. You check your inbox for survey invitations, and...nothing.

This is a common issue survey takers run into. All of these sites say they will email invitations, and it's true, they will, but you will have much better luck if you go to them. For every one survey you are emailed about, there are at least half a dozen waiting for you on their own website. Remember, you won't qualify for all of them, but the more you try, the more you'll complete.

Another thing to keep in mind, which I mentioned above but needs stressing, is that you will be asked for personal information. Not everyone is comfortable with this, for obvious reasons, which is precisely part of the reason these companies pay you for your opinion. It can be difficult to find people willing to offer this information, so many have taken to paying you for it. You will not qualify for any of these surveys if you are not willing to give out your age, gender, and often postal code.

Finally, you will be required to answer questions about everything from what kind of beer you like to whether or not you like the new packaging of some random frozen dinner. You'll be asked about your banking habits, whether you prefer shopping online or in-store, and what kind of vehicle you're most likely to buy next. Anything that relates to consumerism, you will at some point be asked.

How Much You Can Expect to Make

That's what everyone really wants to know, right? How much will you make, and how long will it take to make it?

The answer, of course, depends on you. How much time you're willing to put in, how many sites you join, and how quickly you can get through each survey. Surveys can pay anywhere from a measly $0.50 to a more than acceptable $10, but most are going to fall between the two, paying 3, 4, or 5 dollars. If you were to answer two $3 per day, everyday, you'd make $180 a month, in the time it takes you to drink your morning coffee. That said, survey sites aren't incredibly consistent. Some days you will qualify for several, high-paying surveys, and other days you won't qualify for any. Still, I have found after doing this for a few years, that I can count on making between $50-$100 per month. That doesn't sound like much, but when you consider I literally do them while drinking my coffee, or on my commute to work, it's a substantial amount. Put another way, I can pay to have internet 24/7 by being on it for 30 minutes. I can pay for my monthly bus pass by answering some questions while I'm on the bus. And I'm getting that money simply for giving my honest opinion on products we see everyday.

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